Erica Guido of Grosse Pointe Woods believes you should love your neighbor. That’s why this mom of two founded To Detroit, With Love last September.
“So many people are out there without transportation,” she says. “They needed items delivered, and delivered for free.”
And that is what she does, six days a week.
Her team includes husband Joseph (whose pickup truck has a starring role), along with two steady volunteers and about 2,000 members who donate.
“I collect just about everything. Appliances, furniture, clothes, food, gardening tools – anything you can think of. There’s no limit to what we will pick up.”
Her sons pitch in, too. Julius, 10, hand makes books to give the kids they help – he loves writing mysteries with aliens. And, mom says, both he and his younger brother, Joseph, 5, have become more aware of how fortunate they are.
“They tell me ‘we don’t need this’ and to give the things to the families we help,” Guido says. “Most of the time it’s some of their toys or food.
“They will grow up understanding how important community is.”
As for future plans, Guido has sights set on a larger cargo van and storage warehouse or, someday, a drop-off center. “We just use my front porch right now.”
She encourages everyone to go out and help their own surrounding communities.
“I go into strangers’ homes every day and am welcomed with love,” she says. “We’re not different. Our circumstances are.”
3 things to give
Here’s what’s most helpful to Detroit families in need, Guido says.
- Food. “That’s a big one. It should be nonperishable.”
- Beds/mattresses/bedding. “I didn’t realize how many people were sleeping on the floor. The items can be gently used and clean condition.”
- Dressers. “We cannot get enough. They’re hard to come by.”